Wednesday, February 03, 2010

Obama's education budget bad for rural schools, National Schools Boards Association says

This from the Rural Blog:

President Obama has proposed big changes to federal education funding and the No Child Left Behind Act with the unveiling of his fiscal 2011 budget. It includes a 6.2 percent increase in funding for the Department of Education, but most of that money will go to competitively awarded programs, Alyson Klein of Education Week reports.

Programs that use set formulas to allocate funding such as Title I, based on the number of poor children in a school or district, received little or no increase in budget."The focus on competitive grants and the decision to provide no increase to Title I means rural districts and children in the poorest parts of the country will be left behind," said Anne Bryant, the executive director of the National School Boards Association. "Those districts do not have the capacity to compete for grants—unless you want to shift money from teachers to grant writers." ...

"While there is much to applaud in the budget, we are concerned that virtually all of the proposed increase is for competitive grants, while Title I — the lifeblood for our most disadvantaged children — is flat-funded," Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers, said in a statement. "Students with the most needs should not have to rely on how well adults compete for dollars."

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